Monday, June 18, 2012

Among Other Things, Picnic Attends A Food Swap

I've been super busy.  The bakery is becoming more of a reality with every day that passes.  I go from feeling excited to nervous to terrified and back again on an almost hourly basis.  Things have really been coming together over the last couple of weeks.  Here's the latest:

1.  I should formally announce that I will be setting up a storefront on Haight Street in the old Red Vic movie theater when the building reopens under its new name, Second Act.  Second Act, which will house several food-related businesses in addition to an event space, should be open by the year's end.

 2.  I have found a certified kitchen rental just around the corner from the future storefront from which I will be able to do my baking.  I can't even tell you how lucky this is!  It's the kind of luck that only happens in movies.  Or, apparently in movie theaters.

3.  I have a plan that involves nitrogen and pandas.  Yes, you read that right.  I've discovered nitrogen packaging and plan to try it out on my peppermint panda cookies.  If it works well, you will soon be able to purchase these cookies in San Francisco stores!  Fingers crossed- if it works REALLY well, I will also be able to ship them by mail!  Hello, east coast friends.  I'll let you know how it goes!  Nitrogen packaging is actually really great for packing bulk foods.  If you are the type to buy bulk dry foods, (oatmeal, beans, lentils, etc.)  you may want to start doing this at home.  It's inexpensive and helps you maintain freshness.   Here is a ridiculously boring and extremely useful video about how to do nitrogen packaging.  Do not watch it unless you are sincerely interested, because it's seriously reminiscent of high school shop class.

4.  I have a page up on my website.  It's not finished, but it is cute thanks to the design work of the lovely Laura Allen!

5.  I have spent hours working on the pricing for my baked goods, business expenses, and various other numbery sort of money things.  It has scrambled my brains and made my ears smoke.  I. hate. numbers.  Thankfully, my darling boyfriend has created a whole series of inter-connected spreadsheets that will do the math for me.  If I ever learn how to use it.  I will.  Tomorrow.

6.  If you haven't already done so, please go to Picnic's facebook page and "like" it.  I will be posting special offers, food-related information, and bakery news for my followers once the business is open.

7.  I went to a food swap with some of my peppermint pandas last week.  I forgot my camera at home, but thankfully Vanessa Vichit-Vadakan of The Beet Goes On took some good ones and was willing to share them with me.

Picnic Bakery's Peppermint Pandas

I arrived with several boxes of peppermint pandas and left with the following:

Aimee's Pickled Ginger Peaches
These were such a unique flavor!  Spicy clove and ginger, vinegar, and sweet peaches.  I think they'd be great over cinnamon-vanilla ice cream.  Okay, kitchen…here I come.

Kelly's Limoncello
This was made from the lemons on her family's property.  It was a great consolation prize for Ralph who couldn't join me for the swap.  And how cute is the recycled packaging!?

Melissa & Angela's Tea & Cookies
They have GF options!  I ate about half of these in one sitting.  My labrador, Poppy ate the rest of them and probably in one gulp.  I was very disappointed when I came home to find the empty bag!

Vanessa's Spring Tonic Concentrate
Made with citrus peel, rose petals, star anise, laurel, and spearmint.  I can't wait to mix some drinks with this lovely concoction!

Meredyth's Nutella Almond Cranberry Granola
YUM.  This has been my go-to snack all week!

It was such a great way to meet other foodies and try samples of their homemade specialties.  The event was hosted by the ladies of SF Swappers.  They hold these events fairly regularly, and I encourage my SF foodie friends to sign up for the next one.  As far as I know, they don't have anything scheduled right now, but you can follow them on facebook or twitter to stay informed.


  1. Next time there is a food swap, can I join?! All of it looks so good!

    1. Of course! You have to sign up with them first (at the link above), and then you'll be notified when the next swap is scheduled. There are limited spaces, so you have to sign up quickly when the tickets go on sale. You will love it!

  2. I love the way you told the story of each of your trades Emily! I can't wait for you to open your bakery...those pandas were incredibly delicious. See you at the next swap {we typically do every other month, so next will probably be in August, but we may have to push to early September}.

    1. I'm already thinking about what I'll make for the next one :)

  3. I'm so excited for you! I really want to come visit and see your bakery when it opens, you're amazing!

    1. Thanks, Jesse! I hope you do come visit when the bakery is open!


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